In the Twilight Zone (1961) episode, “The Mind And The Matter”, intolerant, misanthropic, insurance clerk Archibald Beechcroft detests everybody and everything they do. So much so that when he comes across a self-help book that empowers the reader with the ability of mind over matter, he uses it to erase all of mankind from existence (shout-out to a certain Marvel Cinematic Universe movie villain who shall remain nameless). At the end of the episode he realizes that despite their many faults, he despises being alone even more and brings everyone back.
When I saw that episode as a little kid, I wondered how someone could possibly walk around angry at the world, ALL OF THE TIME.
At this point in my life, having encountered my fair share of ignorance and insensitivity (in fact, more than I care to have witnessed), now I see why!
Y’all are insane!
You all are insane!
You people are insane! (Yeah, I said, “You people”. Don’t go there.)
Did I miss anybody?
Well, obviously not everybody, but I believe after you read my 10 Reasons Why This World Could Use An Enema, you’ll know just what the hell I’m talking about. And herrrrrre we go!
It’s Tirade Time.
1. You ain’t the only person here! (The reason I wrote this article): I was at iHop with my family at lunch time and this “cackling hen” wouldn’t stop laughing obnoxiously in the next booth. I mean LOUD and LONG. Look, I believe in the pursuit of happiness, freedom of speech and the right to privacy and all, but have you forgotten that other people are in the same building or room, trying to eat? She sounded like a laugh track from an old episode of “Hee Haw”! I swear, one day I’m gonna be my wicked self and sit next to one of you or stand by your table until you ask what I want. Then I’ll reply that I want to join in on whatever has got you showing the entire restaurant how funny it is. Yeah, Satan won this round. Sorry, Lord.
2. Speaking of rude, I don’t wanna hear your phone conversation: You’re on the phone. We get it. You’ve got Unlimited Talk & Text. Is there a reason that you have to turn your personal speaking volume up to “8”? Ok, maybe I don’t have all the facts. Maybe the person on the other end is in a place where they can’t hear you very well. If you HAVE to yell, perhaps you should find some privacy. And by the way… Can you please wait until AFTER the pastor gives the benediction???
3. Next up, movie theaters. Same gadget, different circumstances. If your phone rings and you feel compelled to answer, whisper “hold on” AS you’re walking out to the hallway entrance and through the double doors. And while we’re talking phones, you DO know that the “full-brightness” mode is on while you engage in your 20-minute text exchange don’t you? Half of the theater is being distracted by your lighthouse beacon!! (Yeah, I’m yelling. Hush) And while we’re in the movie theater, if I overhear you tell your movie buddy that “this is the good part” I swear I’m gonna pick you up like a lioness carries her cub and escort (actually, PUSH) you through the parking lot exit door!
4. It seems one rant segues into another. Blurting out, “Watch this part!” Congratulations on being the first to see the new blockbuster movie. You were pleasantly surprised by all the laughs, scares, plot twists and shocking endings that the movie intended. But telling me to watch some part gives me early indication that something is about to happen. Guess what? It will no longer be a surprise to/for me! You might as well tell me what happens, while you’re at it. Furthermore, you’re doing JUST that when you quote a movie line just before it’s said onscreen. I’m not impressed by your memory, I’m pissed at your mouth! And if you really wanna get cursed out or beaten with the pop bottle that I snuck in, tell me that a movie is “sad when so-and-so dies”. You may soon follow…
Now I know some smart-ass is going to accuse me of being a hypocrite since I revealed the Twilight Zone episode ending at the beginning of this post. Keep in mind that that episode is over 50 years old. People have been born, lived a fair life and DIED since then. The statute of limitations for a spoiler is 5 years. So hush!
5. I’m still in the movie theater. Leave your baby at home! My wife and I know what it’s like. We went through four of them. If we couldn’t get a sitter, we had the good sense and consideration to see the movie separately. And speaking of young’uns, learn the different MPAA ratings. If the movie says Rated R, don’t go complaining to theater management about the 6 different sex positions your 5-year-old just learned while expanding his foul vocabulary, all before the couple got their brains splattered across the screen in 3D by a demonic, unkillable killer.
6. Segues continue… Keep yo’ bad-ass kids at home!! If you bring them over my house and they run wild, so will I. I’m not one to ask you to pay for broken furniture, but if you watch your Tazmanian Devil spin around my house near the big screen and do nothing…?
Now, if you leave them in my care… Ask anyone who’s ever left their children with me (most often only one time). I warn EVERYBODY, “If I watch your kids, I’ll whoop your kids”. And if you come back to retrieve them more than 90 minutes after you promised, I will already have sold your children on the Black Market to recover the cost of my broken possessions. Think I won’t?
7. If you’re sick, stay yo’ sick ass at home! I had a co-worker who bragged about being the only one in the office with perfect attendance. He conveniently forgot that he brought his world-ending plague of a virus to work with him on many occasions and infected everybody ELSE. This is WHY we missed work, because you DIDN’T!
8. Timeliness. If you say you’re coming over, have the decency to tell me when. If you’re running late, please say so. If you’re not going to make it, don’t wait until I call you two hours after you said you’d come to tell me you’re not coming. I had a wanna-be-my-personal-friend coworker tell me he wanted to come by with his wife, three different times. Each time, he was 1-2 hours late (no exaggeration). Once, when I had somewhere else to be, I told him it was ok to come by. That was MY mistake. When I called to see if he was still coming, he told me he’d decided to wash his car and take a nap. Mind you, dude called and said he’d be here in 15 minutes. It was 90 minutes after the call. The 4th time, when he asked, I said, “sure”, as always. Then I left for the movies to watch other people’s LED screen brightness and listen to crying babies as I learned the surprise endings from sneezing movie-goers who laughed out loud incessantly at high volumes.
9. Another segue… Potluck. If you want to have a potluck tailgate party, offer to host it too. Don’t go volunteering my place and everybody else’s each time you want to eat. We love hosting, but if it’s your idea, offer and prep YOUR house/apartment, once in a while. And if you’re bringing one of the main dishes, don’t show up after folks have finished dessert and the game is almost over.
Warning: If you DO show up late, I’m confiscating your meal as dinner for the following night. I don’t want to spend the my hard-earned money from selling children on meal ingredients.
10. Final segue and rant point… “Cursed is he who bringeth little to the feast but leaveth with many filled baskets” (that ain’t a real scripture verse, so don’t go blowing the dust off of your bible looking for it). Don’t come in my house with a snack-sized bag of chips, while carrying an empty 4-quart Tupperware container and aluminum foil (Aluminum, not “aluminium”. You know who you are…). I often prepare food in abundance and encourage people to take plates of food home. But thankfully we all survived that world-ending flu epidemic that my co-worker spread, so you don’t have to come here in “scavenger” mode.
And don’t tell me you “might not make it”, never confirming that you will or won’t, then pop up with an additional family of 12 without telling me. I try to prepare enough food for everyone and don’t mind the numbers. I DO mind Martian INVASIONS! One unknown/uninvited guest even had the gall to ask me where the beer was. I told him that we didn’t host parties with liquor. He angrily asked, “How the hell you gon’ throw a party with no buzz?” My next reply was, “I’m sorry. WHO are you?” Then I thanked him for coming and told him where the liquor store was before offering to get his jacket. He never said another word to me that night. And yes, I did check to see if he brought an empty Tupperware container.
Well, that’s it. If you think I’m being petty, you’re probably one of the afformentioned. But please don’t think that I believe I’m perfect. I’m human and flawed, but I have enough sense to consider others when I interact with them. And I definitely have the intelligence to know when a global colon cleansing or an extended rinse cycle is due.
Sir Archibald Beechroft from The Twilight Zone, I feel you. But next time, let me advise who should be brought back.
…or in the least, let me borrow your book.
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